Ina Steiner EcommerceBytes Blog
News and insight focusing on ecommerce.
by Ina Steiner, Editor of EcommerceBytes.com
Thu July 12 2012 23:16:02

Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay users reacted to the company's latest survey, which asked sellers how satisfied they were with selling on the site and asking them what they felt the eBay brand was all about. (See Friday's Newsflash story.)



On the eBay discussion boards, where the invitation to the survey appeared (including the eBay Power Seller Board), users discussed their reaction. Wrote one seller:

"The question regarding the ebay brand was my favorite! This was my response: "I have no idea what the current ebay brand is about! Ebay used to be a place where you could find unusual one of a kind merchandise. Now it's a site filled with cheap Chinese junk, and new generic merchandise that can be found anywhere." I also had a lot to say about why the fees are too high.....limited visibility, items selling too low.....ect."

Another wrote in part, "they should have asked these questions about THREE years ago - and again every 6 months thereafter. They should have LISTENED to those who had a stake here in their success being a shared success. We cared. THAT is why we made so much "noise"."

An EcommerceBytes reader wrote in and pointed out an error in the survey - they wrote, "While taking the survey, I noticed that one of the questions has an error. It asks "I come to the eBay Community pages to,..." There are two somewhat agree choices and no somewhat disagree choice."
 


The reader said, "I think this error is an example of the frustration people have with eBay. There is just no quality control and certainly not the level of quality control you should see for a company this large."

One survey question asked:

"Below are pairs of statements that are opposite ways someone might describe the types of items listed for sale on eBay. Please read each pair and indicate how much you think each of the statements applies to types of items on eBay. For example, if you agree strongly that there are 'Far more auction items now', you would check the box closest to the statement, but if you only agree slightly, you would check a box further away from the statement. In general, how do you feel about the types of items listed for sale on eBay?"

It then presented respondents with the option to select on a scale from "far fewer" to "far more" for the following:

generic items
name brand items                
Buy It Now items                
new items                    
individual sellers               
auction items                    
commercial sellers               
used items

Let us know what you think eBay is trying to determine through this survey and what you think of the questions - and your responses!                   
 




Comments (61) | Leave Comment | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: dans parts This user has validated their user name.

Thu Jul 12 23:59:35 2012

Well, I did the survey.  It'll be interesting to see how cockeyed they make the results.  Probably won't have anything to do with reality, it'll be what they want it to say, just like most surveys.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: Red Ink Diary This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 00:24:01 2012

Pfffft.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: trickstunt This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 00:36:33 2012

Don't take the survey. Ebay knows what people think already.

The silence will speak louder than a million and one words already shouted.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

This user has validated their user name. by: Ric

Fri Jul 13 00:37:45 2012

It is rare indeed that eBay is opening a survey up to everyone through the discussion boards instead of targeting and cherry picking which members they invite in order to predetermine the results.

Rarer still is the fact that members with multiple accounts are able to take the survey multiple times.

The problem is that eBay is going to do what they always do... massage the information they receive, ignore the pain points sellers express and continue to impose seller defeating policies with the tired tag line "You spoke... We listened" in a desperate attempt to gain acceptance.

If eBay truly listened to their sellers, most of their changes over the past decade would be revised or reversed.

Survey or no survey, eBay will continue to ignore input from their sellers. They will continue to impose systems that defeat sellers chances for success. They will continue make system changes that alienate buyers. They will continue to mimic Amazon without generating anything truly beneficial or unique to eBay.

In the end it will be business as usual and eBay will continue their march toward self inflicted irrelevancy with bad policy, poor implementation, and build everything on top of a crumbling infrastructure.

The company will continue to lie to sellers with lines like " our lowest fees ever" and " we will announce changes in advance to afford sellers time to adjust their business... as is our practice". That is the corporate culture that John Donahoe has brought to eBay and he has stacked the executive ranks with link minded individuals who have never bought or sold in the marketplace they call the shots for.


Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: ejholden This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 00:58:19 2012

''Don't take the survey.''

Possible outcomes:
No one uses Community.  x
We've hidden the rednecks well.  +

''opening a survey up to everyone through the discussion boards''

Predictable outcome:
Well, we asked all the raving whingers and as usual, the results were so contradictory that, even after discounting the rabid & just plain inflammatory resonses, no discernable pattern emerged that could provide a common clear course of action. But at least we tried to listen to them ......

Upside:
A whole bunch of dormant ID's logged onto the site giving us a usage spike we can boast about to Ina & our advertisers, justifying raising fees.

Same dog, different fleas .....

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: blaumann This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 01:20:43 2012

I took the survey. The last thing they ask for is your email address. I typed None of your business. They may through out my responses due to that.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

This user has validated their user name. by: TheCheapSkirt

Fri Jul 13 02:01:09 2012

Oh, they are still "cherry picking". Because anyone banned from the discussion boards cannot see the survey. Just like we cannot see Q & As about changes, etc.

I was banned years ago for asking a question eBay apparently did not like. But they have no problem taking my fees every month. (Fortunately, those fees dropped dramatically when I started selling more on my own sites and significantly less there)

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: spirit-of-shiloh This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 03:08:28 2012

I started the survey then saw how dumb the questions were so I pushed the back button. Also,eBay never cared about sellers input before so why should they now????

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Fri Jul 13 03:17:36 2012

Wow, what you wrote about the Brand message of Ebay is almost exactly how I responded to that question.  

For those that have decided not to take part in the survey, I would sincerely hope you would reconsider.  It's like voting.  If you don't vote in elections it is my opinion that you don't have the right to complain if you don't like what the elective officials are doing.  

Same holds true for Ebay.  If you are going to depend on others, people you don't even know, to get YOUR point of view across, how is that going to work.  If you truely want to improve the community, then you need to participate.  If you don't participate, then don't be part of the "noise" as you aren't willing to do anything to improve things you just want to be able to complain.

Not that I'm going to hold my breath that Ebay is going to make any significant changes that sellers will LIKE.  But that won't stop me from continuing to try and be heard.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: justpassinthru This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 05:03:17 2012

Every Ebay survey I've ever participated in, and in 15 years there have been many, has been followed by a policy change that sticks it to sellers.  

The Ebay company is all about smoke and mirrors.  Do whatever rotten or foolish thing you want, just so long as you spin it so that Wall Street and the media will echo your BS the way you want it.  

I've often found sellers on Ebay forums widely opposed to some policy but Ebay claims their studies present an altogether different picture. When something happens once or twice it's odd; a dozen times and I'm calling it Ebay's modus operandi, just more lying.  I think they conduct a survey, shred the results, and claim that whatever bone headed move they're making is based on statistics.  

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: RCL This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 05:45:07 2012

It's life-sucking to follow the rabid cynicism here, as though as a new reader commented this were the ''eBay-bashing'' site. I remain very committed to eBay, no matter how in jeopardy I feel the management has put us small ''unique item'' sellers. I used to sell at 5 other sites, and even with my eBay sales revenue at half what it was all last year (or less), I do best at eBay. That is what supports my hope that reason will prevail :) I appreciate news, information, and enjoy the clash of opinions--but Fox News is more fair and balanced :o I'd like to read even more opinions, without writers being criticized for their expression.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: mylifeisgood This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 06:37:17 2012

The survey will be one sided before the results are in...

Most of the people that do Fleabay chat rooms are either ones who think they know everything or ones who know nothing and are just looking for a pat on the back.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

This user has validated their user name. by: Anonymous Annie

Fri Jul 13 07:29:30 2012

I wish I could be a hopeful and optimistic as Marie. But for me, it's just not there.

Justpassinthru observes: ''Every Ebay survey [...] has been followed by a policy change that sticks it to sellers'' and on that point, I'm in complete agreement.

But there's *one* comment that PERFECTLY CAPTURES my sentiments about this. It's a exact match for my first reaction. It's as though she was reading my mind when Red Ink Diary said: ''Pfffft''.

Well-said, Red Ink Diary! It's concise and accurate. It expresses the perfect amount of dismissiveness, disdain, distrust and disbelief without sounding too contemptuous.

:-)

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: justpassinthru This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 08:41:21 2012

A favorite trick of Ebay employees to control Ebay forums is the your basic Divide and Conquer.  They slither around forums stirring up conflict, creating disagreements and factions, playing one person against the other, egging on their sycophant followers to bully people who don't sing the Ebay theme song.

If this forum has become a place where Ebay sellers can speak openly without fear of having their livelihoods destroyed by Ebay staffers, or psychopathic sellers, hallefrippinlujah it's about time.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: Cyclestripper This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Fri Jul 13 09:37:55 2012

These surveys have never expressed a sincere concern about user opinion. They have been used to justify changes proposed by members of management. One may best be served by looking at the survey as a predictor of the direction of the company rather than an attempt to gain insight into user practice.  So, the real question is, what are they trying to justify. Read between the lines.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 11:40:49 2012

Pfffffft indeed!

Yeah what ARE they trying to justify did run thru my fuzzy brain.  

And---when I got to the "send us your emai" section---gee if I am RESPONDING to this---aren't I USING my email?  Maybe this is just a tech question and I am not a tech person---guess if you answered via a cell or other device maybe the email is not captured.

And---are those people who DO respond and are CRITICAL of FleeceBAy going to find their accounts FURTHER affected by answering HONESTLY?

After all we already KNOW how "honest" ebay is and how "honest" their feedback system is and how "honest" descriptions of items are treated....

So if all of my items are vanished or I never sell anything there again---that would in no way shape manner or form have ANYTHING to do with MY honesty in filling out this survey now would it?

Would it?

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

This user has validated their user name. by: Bad Hair Day

Fri Jul 13 12:12:20 2012

I will NOT be responding to their survey. As has been mentioned by others....they already know how their Sellers feel / think. Does anyone truly believe that they don't already read the discussion boards ? Does anyone truly believe that even JD himself doesn't poke his nose in just out of 'curiosity' after a new policy has been implemented ? Further more....if they don't.....then shame on them! That is where their wealth of Seller feedback is! Regrettably, I think that eBay has lost it's ability to extrapolate anything from this survey that will benefit any of it's Sellers in any constructive or intelligent fashion.They're lost in their own maze of 'mind games' and ' power tripping'. If you're hoping that anything will change for the better...it's just wishful thinking on your part. Correction....things may 'change' however it will most likely benefit the Buyers and NOT the Sellers.  

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: hotplatters This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Fri Jul 13 12:34:37 2012

I hope others take this survey and let ebay know exactly how they feel... Here's what I had to say :
I've become extremely discouraged about what the ebay brand is all about ''now'' as opposed to a few years ago...  It used to be fun to sell here and fairly profitable but all the changes made recently, ebay's attitude towards bending over backwards for the buyers, neglecting the sellers, constant changes in fee structures and now what REALLY bothers me is the demands you now make on offering 1 day handling... I have almost 9,500+ positive feedbacks and 100 % approval yet because I'm unable to offer 1 day handling due to other obligations and committments, I've lost my 20 % final value fee discount, and top seller status...  My sales are now suffering as a result and if this continues, I will be forced to find other alternatives to selling my products...  Thank you for allowing me to vent... I just hope that the ''higher powers'' at ebay take these surveys seriously as I'm sure there are many others who feel the same way...  

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: JustTheFacts This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 12:45:40 2012

Marie said,
"It's like voting.  If you don't vote in elections it is my opinion that you don't have the right to complain if you don't like what the elective officials are doing."

Well peole who don't vote can also blame those that DO for the HORRIBLE people we have in there and for things getting WORSE and not better.  After all YOU voted for them.

Picking the lesser of two evils still means you picked EVIL!  Do that make you just as responsible for the evil.

It is like asking someone, do you want to me punch you in the face or kick you in the face.

Well I do not want you to do NEITHER.  So I pick NONE of the above.

Perminate Link for Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception   Sellers Respond to New eBay Survey about Brand Perception

by: JustTheFacts This user has validated their user name.

Fri Jul 13 12:58:49 2012

This survey will go NOWHERE except take what we say and TWIST it.

They have no intentions on making it better for sellers.   Think about the newest batch of HORRIBLE changes, trying to put lipstick on the pig will not change it from being a PIG!

I think the survey is just a RUSE to make sellers THINK they are listening and that changes for the better are coming.  DON'T HOLD YOUR BREATH!  

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